San Francisco

February 20, 2013

As our departure date gets closer, we made a quick trip to San Francisco to pick up Gary’s special 6-month visa for the EU/Schengen countries at the Swiss Consulate. It has been our tradition, whenever we go to San Francisco, to buy a fresh crab at Fishermen’s Wharf, a loaf of sour dough bread at the famous Boudin Bakery and maybe a little bottle of white wine. The docks where the fishing fleet ties up are a perfect place for a lunch stop. That said, Gary’s grandmother, a San Francisco “Lady”, always took the family to Alioto’s, (founded in 1925), where the favorite Crab Louie Salad was served. On this trip, having heard about it for years, Monika had to have a “Crab Louie”. Back on December 22, 1945 it cost $1.25! Today the price is $38.00 and a glass of Chardonnay $12. That’s inflation!! It was very good but on our next trip to the City By the Bay, we’ll buy a cracked crab and go back to the docks with the seagulls.

Driving out through the nightmare traffic, we did pass the old Lotta’s Fountain. Lotta Mignon Crabtree grew up in our Gold Rush town of Grass Valley, CA and became one of the wealthiest and most beloved American entertainers of the late 19th century. Lotta’s Fountain served as a central meeting point during the devastating 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fire aftermath. To this day, on April 18 at 5:12 AM, a dwindling number of survivors and others gather to commemorate the tragic event.

The famous Alioto’s Waterside Café was founded in 1925.

The famous Alioto’s Waterside Café was founded in 1925.

The wooden docks overlooking the fishing fleet are a great place to enjoy a fresh cracked crab and some famous sour dough bread from the Boudin Bakery.

The wooden docks overlooking the fishing fleet are a great place to enjoy a fresh cracked crab and some famous sour dough bread from the Boudin Bakery.

Monika had to have a “Crab Louie” at least once in her life, so we splurged.

Monika had to have a “Crab Louie” at least once in her life, so we splurged.

The menu from 1945 clearly states, (lower left corner, “NO SERVICE LESS THAN .25c PER PERSON”

The menu from 1945 clearly states, (lower left corner, “NO SERVICE LESS THAN .25c PER PERSON”

The famous Lotta’s fountain on Market Street was dedicated on September 9, 1875 and the cast iron pillar was donated by Lotta Crabtree in 1916.

The famous Lotta’s fountain on Market Street was dedicated on September 9, 1875. The cast iron pillar was donated by Lotta Crabtree in 1916.

 

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